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Lessons from the Second Epistle of Peter
2 Peter

By Ken Raggio

Exceeding Great And Precious Promises

The promises of God are "Yea!" and "Amen!" (2 Corinthians 1:20). Yes! Certainly! God will do everything He said He will do. To everyone who will obey the Gospel plan, He has made exceeding great and precious promises. Eternal life. Partakers of His divine nature. YEA! AMEN!

2 Peter 1:3-4 - "According as his divine power hath given unto us all things that pertain unto life and godliness, ...Whereby are given unto us exceeding great and precious promises: that by these ye might be partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust."

These Things Guarantee Fruitfulness

Here is a sure formula for spiritual fruitfulness. DILIGENTLY add virtue (moral excellence) to your faith (beliefs, convictions). Then add knowledge (perception, awareness), then temperance (self-control). Next, add patience (cheerful endurance, constancy). Then, add godliness (piety, holiness), followed by brotherly kindness, and charity (love).

2 Peter 1:8-9 - "For if these things be in you, and abound, they make you that ye shall neither be barren nor unfruitful in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ. But he that lacketh these things is blind, and cannot see afar off, and hath forgotten that he was purged from his old sins."

Make Your Calling And Election Sure

From the foundation of the world, God knew whether you would be redeemed, not because you have no control over your destiny, but because He knew from the beginning the choices you would make. While you live, the choices are still yours to make. Will you make your calling and election sure? A saint who puts the great spiritual precepts into practice will never fail.

2 Peter 1:10 - "Wherefore the rather, brethren, give diligence to make your calling and election sure: for if ye do these things [Faith - Virtue - Knowledge - Temperance - Patience - Godliness - Kindness - Charity], ye shall never fall."

Shortly I Must Put Off This My Tabernacle

The Lord revealed to Peter that he would soon be dying. That prompted him to relate some of his personal testimony and exhort the saints on some important topics. God already knows the details of your departure although you do not know. Glorify God while you have time.

2 Peter 1:12-15 - "I will not be negligent to put you always in remembrance of these things, ...that shortly I must put off this my tabernacle, even as our Lord Jesus Christ hath shewed me. Moreover I will endeavour that ye may be able after my decease to have these things always in remembrance."

Eyewitnesses Of His Majesty

Leonard Ravenhill said, "A man with an experience is never at the mercy of a man with an argument." Peter would have agreed. Peter did not follow Jesus Christ foolishly. He had seen the signs, wonders and miracles that Jesus had performed. He had heard him preach to the multitudes. He had seen him and talked with Him since He raised from the dead. Peter was a hard-core believer.

2 Peter 1:16 - "For we have not followed cunningly devised fables, when we made known unto you the power and coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, but were eyewitnesses of his majesty."

The Day Star

Day star is another term for morning star (usually the planet Venus). Some say it is the Sun. In scriptures, Jesus is "the bright and morning star," (Revelation 22:16). Peter said that by taking heed to the sure words of prophecy, they will shine in your dark places until the Day Star, Jesus, arises in your heart (spiritual birth).

2 Peter 1:19 - "We have also a more sure word of prophecy; whereunto ye do well that ye take heed, as unto a light that shineth in a dark place, until the day dawn, and the day star arise in your hearts."

No Prophecy Of Scripture Is Of Private Interpretation

Do not play frivolously with Bible prophecies, or be too quick to interpret a prophecy without knowing many other verses that bear on that subject. Bible prophecies are like divine DNA. One misinterpretation can produce a mutation. Treat prophecy with great reverence. If you do not understand it, keep silent until you have a convincing body of evidence.

2 Peter 1:20-21 - "Knowing this first, that no prophecy of the scripture is of any private interpretation. For the prophecy came not in old time by the will of man: but holy men of God spake as they were moved by the Holy Ghost."

False Prophets And False Teachers In The Last Days

As modern pseudo-Christianity falls like a rock into the abyss of false doctrines and "damnable heresies," you and I must stand on the brakes. Stop the madness. Reject and renounce false prophets and false teachers. Utterly refuse to support or even sit under a false teacher. Walk out.

2 Peter 2:1-2 - "But there were false prophets also among the people, even as there shall be false teachers among you, who privily shall bring in damnable heresies, even denying the Lord that bought them, and bring upon themselves swift destruction. And many shall follow their pernicious [destructive, ruinous] ways."

They Deny The Lord And Bring On Swift Destruction

In 2010, researcher George Barna reported that 58% of American Christians surveyed believed the Holy Spirit is NOT a living entity, but a mere symbol of God's power. But the Bible says the Holy Spirit is the Spirit of Christ. "The Lord is that Spirit," 2 Corinthians 3:17. "He that is with you shall be in you," John 14:17. They are denying the Holy Ghost of Christ who dwells in the Church since Pentecost.

2 Peter 2:1 - "There shall be false teachers among you, who privily shall bring in damnable heresies, even denying the Lord that bought them, and bring upon themselves swift destruction."

The Way Of Truth Shall Be Evil Spoken Of

Time and space scarcely allows for discussion of the countless false doctrines, false ministers, false movements, false denominations, cults, charlatans and scandals that mar the face of modern Christianity. Vast multitudes despise and even hate Christianity because it too often has an evil, distasteful reputation. This tragic state of affairs is the fulfillment of one of Peter's most significant prophecies. They cause TRUTH to be evil spoken of. Demand the truth, and nothing but the truth.

2 Peter 2:2 - "Many shall follow their pernicious [ruinous, destructive, damnable] ways; by reason of whom the way of truth shall be evil spoken of."

With Feigned Words They Make Merchandise Of You

Many false ministers these days appeal to the covetous nature of men. Men want wealth, prosperity and success. They want to be esteemed among men. They want power and authority. Call it the "human potential movement." Call it the "Success and Prosperity Gospel." Call it anything you want, but do NOT call it the Gospel of Jesus Christ. They teach it to make money for themselves. Judgment and damnation await them.

2 Peter 2:3 - "Through covetousness shall they with feigned [plastic, artificial] words make merchandise of you; whose judgment now of a long time lingereth not, and their damnation slumbereth not."

The Angels That Sinned

Maybe you do not believe in angels. You should. Angels are very much the creatures of God. No less than 100 million now stand behind the Throne of God singing, "Holy, holy, holy!" Angels also minister to the saints of God. But one-third of all the angels have been cast out of God's holy presence (Revelation 12:4). There is a powerful lesson for us in angels. Nobody gets by with sin.

2 Peter 2:4 - "God spared not the angels that sinned, but cast them down to hell, and delivered them into chains of darkness, to be reserved unto judgment."

Hell Fire And Chains Of Darkness

Jesus referred to hell as "everlasting fire, prepared for the devil and his angels," Matthew 25:41. "The wicked shall be turned into hell, and all the nations that forget God," Psalms 9:17. God said, "For a fire is kindled in mine anger, and shall burn unto the lowest hell," Deuteronomy 32:22. The fire of God's wrath reaches into the farthest regions of the dead, and will torment fallen angels and sinful men.

2 Peter 2:4 - "...God spared not the angels that sinned, but cast them down to hell, and delivered them into chains of darkness, to be reserved unto judgment."

A Righteous Man Among The Ungodly

Unless you live in a cave, you are probably surrounded by ungodly people a large part of your time. You must do the will of God even in the midst of the ungodly. It is the rule, not the exception. Eventually, God will deliver you. Remember Noah. Remember Lot.

2 Peter 2:8-9 - "(For that righteous man dwelling among them, in seeing and hearing, vexed his righteous soul from day to day with their unlawful deeds;) The Lord knoweth how to deliver the godly out of temptations, and to reserve the unjust unto the day of judgment to be punished."

The Unjust Are Like Brute Beasts And Will Be Punished

God will "reserve the unjust unto the day of judgment to be punished." If you are full of unclean lusts, despise authorities and speak evil of dignities, you are presumptuous and self-willed. Even holy angels do not speak evil of dignities. God Himself will punish you.

2 Peter 2:12-13 - "But these, as natural brute beasts, made to be taken and destroyed, speak evil of the things that they understand not; and shall utterly perish in their own corruption; And shall receive the reward of unrighteousness, ...Spots they are and blemishes, sporting themselves with their own deceivings while they feast with you."

Cursed Children

People who despise governments, speak evil of dignities, and make railing accusations against powers that are ordained of God, are mentioned with those who walk after the flesh in the lust of uncleanness, have eyes full of adultery, and cannot cease from sin. Both rebellious and immoral people have the same syndrome: they disobey rules and rulers.

2 Peter 2:13-14 - "Spots they are and blemishes, sporting themselves with their own deceivings while they feast with you; Having eyes full of adultery, and that cannot cease from sin; beguiling unstable souls: an heart they have exercised with covetous practices; cursed children."

False Ministers: Wells Without Water, Passing Clouds

Peter's vocabulary concerning false ministers in the last days was not "politically correct." He said what he meant, and meant what he said. "False prophets, ...false teachers, ...damnable heresies, ...swift destruction, ...pernicious ways, ...covetousness, ...feigned words, ...ungodly, ...filthy conversation, ...lust of uncleanness, ...presumptuous, ...selfwilled, ...speak evil of dignities, ...natural brute beasts, ...spots, ...blemishes, ...eyes full of adultery, ...cannot cease from sin; beguiling unstable souls, ...covetous practices; cursed children." Godless men are reprehensible. Rebukes are justified.

2 Peter 2:17 - "These are wells without water, clouds that are carried with a tempest; to whom the mist of darkness is reserved for ever."

Servants Of Corruption

False ministers "speak great swelling words of vanity." They constantly search for the most popular ways to hold people's attention, at the expense of true Gospel preaching. "They allure through the lusts of the flesh, through much wantonness, those that were clean escaped from them who live in error." They appeal to the carnal interests of those in their audience. They are not spiritual. They are not true men of God.

2 Peter 2:19 - "While they promise them liberty, they themselves are the servants of corruption: for of whom a man is overcome, of the same is he brought in bondage."

The Way Of Balaam - Selling Out To The Enemy

The story of the Prophet Balaam in Numbers 22 is about a man of God being bribed to side with God's enemies. Peter said that people who despise authority and are morally unclean are "following the way of Balaam, ...who loved the wages of unrighteousness." If you can be enticed to join parties with the world, you are a sell-out like Balaam. When you turn your back on God's rules and rulers, you become a slave to those who buy you.

2 Peter 2:19 - "For of whom a man is overcome, of the same is he brought in bondage."

The End Is Worse Than The Beginning For A Backslider

The most dangerous and deceptive leaders in all of Christianity are those who are going backwards spiritually and doctrinally. They have less convictions than they once had, less doctrinal purity, less reverence, less holiness, and less desire for truly spiritual things. They are more carnal and evil now than before they knew God. Flee them! Escape as fast as you can!

2 Peter 2:20 - "For if after they have escaped the pollutions of the world through the knowledge of the Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, they are again entangled therein, and overcome, the latter end is worse with them than the beginning."

It Had Been Better For Them Not To Have Known

No one will face a more horrifying judgment than those who once walked with God then turned their backs on Him and returned to the beggarly elements. Don't be a fool. NEVER look back.

2 Peter 2:21-22 - "It had been better for them not to have known the way of righteousness, than, after they have known it, to turn from the holy commandment delivered unto them. But it is happened unto them according to the true proverb, The dog is turned to his own vomit again; and the sow that was washed to her wallowing in the mire."


The prophets and apostles warn, "that there shall come in the last days scoffers, walking after their own lusts, And saying, Where is the promise of his coming? for since the fathers fell asleep, all things continue as they were from the beginning." Noah warned his generation, and they scoffed. Next time, God will destroy it all by fire. Hold your tongue, scoffer! Humble yourself, lest you too perish.

2 Peter 3:7 - "The heavens and the earth, which are now, by the same word are kept in store, reserved unto fire against the day of judgment and perdition of ungodly men."

The Millennium - 1000-Year Reign Of Christ On Earth

In the beginning, God worked for six days, then rested on the seventh. Four prophetic days (4000 years) of human history transpired before Calvary. Two prophetic days (2000 years) have occurred since Calvary. It is time now for the seventh day - God's Sabbath. Jesus Christ will rule and reign on the earth from Jerusalem, Israel for 1000 years of perfect peace. The Millennial Reign of Jesus Christ will immediately follow Armageddon.

2 Peter 3:8 - " not ignorant of this one thing, that one day is with the Lord as a thousand years, and a thousand years as one day."

All Should Come To Repentance

There are well over one thousand prophecies in the Bible. Most have been fulfilled. Hundreds are either being fulfilled presently, or will be fulfilled soon. Still, Peter said there would be scoffers who mock prophecies because they have not come to pass. But there is a merciful reason why God does not always fulfill prophecies quickly. He is LONGSUFFERING, and wants men to be saved.

2 Peter 3:9 - "The Lord is not slack concerning his promise, as some men count slackness; but is longsuffering to us-ward, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance."

As A Thief In The Night

In 1 Thessalonians 5:2, Paul said, "The day of the Lord so cometh as a thief in the night." That prophecy pointed to the second coming of Jesus (1 Thessalonians 4:16). Peter named another event that will also come as a thief in the night: the final destruction of the material universe at the end of the 1000-year reign of Christ on earth.

2 Peter 3:10 - "The day of the Lord will come as a thief in the night; ...the heavens shall pass away ...the elements shall melt with fervent heat, the earth ...shall be burned up."

All These Things Shall Be Dissolved

The entire material universe will someday disappear. After Jesus rules the earth in perfection for 1000 years, He will dissolve it all, and the New Heaven and New Earth will be revealed. Every atom and molecule will vanish. The saints of God will spend eternity in His timeless spiritual universe.

2 Peter 3:10,12 - "...the heavens shall pass away with a great noise, and the elements shall melt with fervent heat, the earth also and the works that are therein shall be burned up. ...the heavens being on fire shall be dissolved, and the elements shall melt with fervent heat"

Let Holy Conversation And Godliness Be Your Manner

Do you adequately govern your mouth, or do you spout things that should never be said? David said, "Let the words of my mouth, and the meditation of my heart, be acceptable in thy sight, O LORD," Psalms 19:14. We are nearing the end of the age and the return of our Lord Jesus Christ. We should take the utmost care to keep our hearts and our mouths pure of any guile, any wrong.

2 Peter 3:11 - "Seeing then that all these things shall be dissolved, what manner of persons ought ye to be in all holy conversation and godliness."

The Heavens Will Dissolve, The Elements Will Melt

Physical scientists postulate that there is no God and no spirits. God's Word, however, reveals that the spirit world totally rules this world that science only thinks it understands. At the end of time, God will melt all elements - atoms, particles, molecules. There will be no more material universe as we know it. Saints will then see what the spirit world really consists of: God, His throne, angels, souls of righteous men, mansions, infinite glory and beauty never seen by man.

2 Peter 3:12 - "...the heavens being on fire shall be dissolved, and the elements shall melt with fervent heat."

New Heavens And A New Earth

Some people teach that the earth is eternal. Not so (Revelation 21:1). Peter and John clearly told us that God will totally destroy this temporal, material universe. That should not be difficult to understand. God is an eternal, invisible Spirit who dwells in an eternal spiritual universe. For a while, He dwelt as a man among us in our temporal universe. But for eternity, we will dwell as born-again creatures in a new place He is now preparing (Hebrews 11:16; John 14:2).

2 Peter 3:13 - "Nevertheless we, according to his promise, look for new heavens and a new earth, wherein dwelleth righteousness."

Be Diligent To Be Found Without Spot And Blameless

Many "grace" preachers hurl charges of legalism against every Christian who makes any emphasis of keeping Commandments and following biblical rules. "Nothing you can do can save you!" they say. That is NOT the point. The WRONG that you do damns you. God's grace has NEVER covered unrepentant, unforsaken sin. If you carelessly defile yourself with carnality, worldliness or selfish living, you are foolish to believe that grace will automatically give you a pass. You must be DILIGENT to be spotless and blameless.

2 Peter 3:14 - "Be diligent that ye may be found of him in peace, without spot, and blameless."

Paul's Epistles

Peter urged his readers not to dispute the writings of the Apostle Paul and thus fall into heresy and destruction. "Our beloved brother Paul also according to the wisdom given unto him hath written unto you; As also in all his epistles, speaking in them of these things; in which are some things hard to be understood, which they that are unlearned and unstable wrest, as they do also the other scriptures, unto their own destruction."

2 Peter 3:17-18 - "Beware lest ye also, being led away with the error of the wicked, fall from your own stedfastness."

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